Leadership Team

Brian Burrell, Director – Interim Solutions





Brian spent the first 5 years of his career at a global recruiting firm where he led their Los Angeles team and he was also one of the firm’s top producers.  While partnering with a broad range of companies, from Fortune 500 to start-ups and across industries, Brian specialized in placing VP to Staff level Finance and Accounting professionals on an interim and interim-to-hire basis.  Brian’s time leading a team of seven in Los Angeles has given him a strong understanding of the local accounting and finance market, as well as a strong and growing network of top tier accounting and finance professionals.


Brian’s colleagues, clients, and consultants know him as a trusted business partner who puts relationships and people first.  He takes a hardworking and solutions-oriented approach, which has resulted in his clients and consultants choosing to partner with him on multiple engagements.


Brian graduated from Fresno State University with a Bachelor of Arts in Communications.  Brian was a member of the Fresno State football team and started at Quarterback in 2014.

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Becky deSouza, Partner – HR Recruiting Practice





Becky has dedicated her career of 20+ years to developing effective solutions for Talent Development and Recruiting. She served as a strategic business partner in Corporate Talent Acquisition roles in the entertainment industry, as well as gaining valuable experience across multiple industries with a national staffing firm. Her passion lies with ensuring that people find the right role to make the most meaningful impact on their organization.


Prior to joining Conexus, Becky spent 11 years running DreamWorks Animation’s Corporate Recruiting team, where she was regarded as a consultative partner offering a customer focused approach to bringing top-tier talent to her clients. Her largest client groups included Human Resources, Business Affairs, Facilities, Finance, Accounting, and Marketing. During her tenure at DreamWorks Animation, she gained experience developing systems, reporting, and analytics to build best practices and support business success and growth. She worked closely with her HR Business Partners, Compensation, HRIS and Benefits teams, building a strong understanding of the power of a well-defined Human Resources Organization.


Becky’s experience at DreamWorks coupled with 10 years in the contingent staffing industry fueled her desire to build the Human Resources Practice with Conexus.


Becky holds a B.A. in Communication and a minor in Psychology from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.

Colleen Freeman, Founder & Partner





Prior to merging with Conexus, Colleen was co-founder and partner at Citadel.  With over 20 years of business knowledge, her deep understanding of organizational dynamics and process in small to large company environments provides strategic direction and long-term success to the businesses we serve.


She began her career as Controller of a consumer products company, overseeing Accounting, Technology and Human Resources functions that successfully navigated the business through rapid growth for many years.


She then took on a leadership role with an international, publicly held, multi-billion-dollar firm specializing in accounting and finance consulting, guiding them in the opening of new offices and divisions, always working side by side with the clients in the region as well as turnaround specialists for struggling business units.


She served as Orange County Director of Client Services for Tatum LLC, which was a national firm focused on services around the office of the CFO and CIO.


After Tatum was sold to a strategic buyer, Colleen jumped into a startup and was one of the founders of Beacon Resources, which specialized in accounting and finance consulting and placement.  Beacon quickly grew to be one of the fastest growing management companies in Orange County, according to the Orange County Business Journal for four years running and was later successfully sold to Gryphon Investors/DLC.


Prior to co-founding Citadel, Colleen was a partner and founder of Tactical Cloud, which was a consultancy focused on cloud ERP and reporting tools such as NetSuite and Adaptive.  Tactical Cloud was successfully sold to a strategic buyer, Eide Bailly, after only three and a half years of rapid growth.

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Sean Gill, Founder & Partner





Sean began his career as a CPA in the Audit practice at Deloitte, working in Detroit and Moscow before moving to Los Angeles to work for the Walt Disney Company. He transitioned into Executive Recruiting in 1999, originally working for a national firm where he became the Regional Manager for Southern California, leading search practices in Los Angeles and Orange County. He spent nearly 10 years as a Founding Partner of a Los Angeles based Finance and Accounting search firm. Sean built a successful practice, trusted by clients in a multitude of industries throughout Southern California. He founded Conexus in January 2012 with the vision of building a new firm whose model is ideally suited to meet the variety of challenges faced by his clients.


Since 1999, Sean has completed more than 1,000 searches within Finance, Accounting, Audit, and Tax, as well as Executive level roles in Banking and a variety of corporate functions (such as HR, Compliance, and Legal). Fortune 500 companies, small and mid-cap public companies, private equity portfolio companies, and emerging middle-market organizations have called upon Sean to find talent ranging from experienced staff to C-level executives. Sean’s industry experience includes Asset Management, Banking, Consumer Products, Healthcare Manufacturing and Distribution, Media and Entertainment, Professional Services, Real Estate, Retail, Software and Technology, and more.


Known for his energetic work style, a passion for client service, and an ability to solve complex problems, Sean has consistently been a top producer while maintaining a reputation for quality results. As a former CPA, Sean performs a thorough assessment of each candidate’s technical and soft skills to match them to the appropriate roles and environments. As a result, nearly 100% of Sean’s clients have used him for multiple assignments.


Sean holds a B.A. in Economics and Management from Albion College. He resides in San Marino, CA with his wife and three sons.

Tammy Hawkins, Vice President – Technology Practice





Tammy has extensive experience in the Technology Resources industry, having partnered with companies in Southern California since 1999 to bring talent to their mission critical projects and teams.  She is an experienced and well-rounded leader with a verifiable track record of career progression and success.


Her career has spanned roles as an individual contributor to senior leadership, holding positions as Managing Director and Vice President, some with multi-market responsibility.  Clients include Fortune 500 companies as well as small regional businesses in various industries.


Tammy has deep relationships in the Southern California market which she leverages for her clients to bring the right resources to the right roles. Her ability to leverage her extensive network has been instrumental to her success. Her clients always know that she will be clear and transparent in her support of their initiatives and will bring all resources to bear to ensure they have the talent they need.


Working collaboratively and using her relationships has resulted in various awards and recognitions throughout her career. With her most recent organization, she was awarded The Power You Award which is given to 10 markets within a global footprint. The award is based on achievement in the following criteria:  Market Expansion, Collaboration, Quality and Community Service. In addition, Tammy has a long history of volunteering with non-profits and industry organizations within the Southern California market. She was one of the original WITI (Women in Technology International) members who brought this organization to the OC / LA market. Other organizations she has been involved with and held leadership roles within are SoTec, PMI, IIBA, and 5Saturdays.


Tammy began her career serving in the US Army in the Adjutant General’s Branch and holds a Bachelor of Science in Management Degree from Hamilton University.

Mike Kelly, Founder & Partner





Mike has more than 20 years’ experience in providing accounting, advisory, human capital, ERP system design/integration and human capital solutions. He is a Partner at Conexus, an Interim Solutions and Executive Search firm specialized in the areas of Finance, Accounting, Human Resources, and Information Technology. Mike was a Founding Partner of Irvine based Citadel CFO. In 2020, Citadel merged with Conexus, an Executive Search firm based in Los Angeles. The merger has turned Conexus into one of the largest and fastest growing recruitment firms in Southern California. With offices in Irvine, El Segundo, and Pasadena, Conexus provides human capital solutions to clients in a multitude of industries located throughout the SoCal region.


Prior to Citadel and Conexus, Mike founded, scaled, and sold multiple professional services firms:


He founded Spinnaker Financial Resources, which provided public and private companies with interim CFO, Controller, and direct hire accounting resources. The company was acquired by Tatum LLC, a national consultancy firm, and he played a lead role in growing their California presence to include offices in San Diego, Los Angeles, and San Francisco.

Next, Mike was a co-founder of Beacon Resources, which was named by the Orange County Business Journal as one of the fastest growing consulting companies in Orange County for four years in a row. Beacon was acquired by Gryphon Investors/DLC.


After Beacon was acquired, Mike co-founded Tactical Cloud, which grew to the fastest growing cloud ERP NetSuite partner in Southern California. Tactical Cloud was acquired by Eide Bailly, a top 20 CPA firm and the largest NetSuite provider in the company.


Mike is a former CPA who began his professional career in the Entrepreneurial Services Group of Ernst & Young, assisting an array of businesses from start-ups to mature public companies in audits and SEC reporting.


Mike received his BS degree with a concentration in accounting from Cal Poly State University, San Luis Obispo. He serves on the Ernst & Young alumni board of directors and is also a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants.

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Mike Melloh, Partner – Finance & Accounting Practice





After beginning his career in Audit and Consulting with Deloitte’s Minneapolis and Orange County offices, Mike entered the Executive Recruiting industry in 2000. Prior to joining Conexus, he worked for more than 10 years in one of Los Angeles’ leading Executive Search firms. As a Director, Mike focused on both retained and contingent search. Mike’s industry experience includes Media and Entertainment, Technology, Retail, Manufacturing, Consumer Products, Real Estate, and Financial Services. Mike has successfully completed hundreds of searches that commonly include: SVP and VP Finance, Controller, Assistant Controller, Finance Director, Finance Manager, Accounting Manager, Senior Financial Analyst, Senior Accountant, and leadership roles in Human Resources and other corporate functions.


Known as a trusted business partner for companies from mature start-up to Fortune 500, Mike brings a common sense approach and insightful business acumen. Mike has an exceptional ability to assess client hiring needs and then identify and attract relevant candidates. His reputation for dedicated effort and high ethical standards has earned him a loyal following from both clients and candidates.


Mike holds a B.S. in Business with a concentration in Finance from the University of Minnesota. He resides in South Pasadena, CA with his wife and two children.

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Matt Primeau, Founder & Partner





Prior to merging with Conexus, Matt served as co-founder and partner for Citadel, helping clients and candidates find the right match for their strategic business hiring needs and career path objectives. With over 13 years of accounting and finance recruitment and business development experience, as well as long standing relations within Orange County and surrounding communities, Matt brings a wealth of knowledge and hiring expertise to hisapproach. Having started his career placing interim and interim-to-hire CPAs and MBAs and degreed accounting and finance professionals, Matt then shifted to placing direct hire finance and accounting professionals and passive candidates at the Manager, Controller, Director, VP and C-Levels.


Prior to joining Citadel, Matt has managed both direct hire and interim practices for large human capital companies such as Robert Half International and The Mergis Group/Randstad Company. In addition, Matt spent the past eight years as Director of Business Development for Beacon Resources, serving as a key member in helping the company grow from a start up to one of Orange County’s fastest growing companies according to the Orange County Business Journal.


Matt graduated from Washington State University with a Bachelor of Arts degree from the Edward R. Murrow School of Communication.

Robert Rossman, Managing Director – Interim Solutions





Robert began his recruiting career in 2014 after a career as an audio engineer for music, film & TV. In his first role at a global staffing firm, Robert built out a startup accounting & finance division from scratch, growing the practice across Los Angeles. He later joined a regional accounting & finance recruiting firm, where he was the top producer in Los Angeles for consulting, more than tripling his output year-over-year.


Supporting middle-market to Fortune 500 companies across a variety of industries, Robert has built a reputation for identifying elite talent at a moment’s notice. His clients depend on him for critical projects, including financial reporting, software implementations, staff augmentation, mergers & acquisitions support, employee leaves of absence, resignation backfills, and more. His consultant network spans from CFOs to Senior and Management-level accounting & finance professionals, ensuring he has a resource with the right technical expertise and soft skills to suit any hiring need. Robert’s detail-oriented approach has resulted in hundreds of successful placements, with many consultants converting to permanent employees at the conclusion of their projects.


Robert holds a B.S. in Recording Arts from the Jacobs School of Music and a Certificate in Business Foundations from the Kelley School of Business at Indiana University. He and his wife reside in Los Angeles, CA.

David Saunders, Managing Director – Interim Solutions





David has more than eight years of accounting & finance focused search experience in the Greater Los Angeles market. In addition to his success in executive search, David possesses extensive experience in recruiting candidates for Interim Solutions and Consulting projects. His keen ability to identify skilled financial talent, coupled with his extensive network of accounting & finance professionals, have benefited his clients who range from startups to Fortune 500 companies across a multitude of industries in Southern California.


David started his accounting and finance recruiting career with one of the largest privately-held staffing firms in the nation. He left there as the most tenured Southern California team member to launch the Los Angeles division of the successful boutique firm, Beacon Resources. David partnered with clients for both interim and permanent placements and led his division in consulting-generated revenue for four consecutive years. His efforts grew the Los Angeles office to become the highest producing operation at Beacon Resources, and he was selected to open their 2nd Los Angeles office in early 2018. David’s contributions greatly bolstered the organization’s market presence, resulting in its sale to Addison Group in 2019.


David graduated from San Diego State University with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology. He and his wife recently welcomed their second child in Fall of 2020.